“ Type: Breads/Cakes „
Normally, I make all my own cakes, and only rarely when time is very short am I reduced to buying shop-bought cakes. I like Marmalade Cake, and Yorkshire Tea do make half-decent teabags, so the combination of both seemed a winner. This particular cake caught my eye as it boasted a new and improved recipe; I'm always slightly sceptical of these because one wonders what was wrong with it before?
The first thing to say is that the cake inside the packaging is significantly smaller. It comes in a cardboard case too. I couldn't get the cake to turn out of its cardboard shell, so was reduced to cutting this open.
The cake itself is not technically a Marmalade Cake at all (these are really fruit cakes with marmalade in). It is a sponge cake with a small addition of yellow colouring and a few pieces of candied peal.
Perhaps naively, I was hoping for a cake, albeit a sponge one, which actually tasted of marmalade; sadly, this wasn't the case. The cake had a faint hint of lemon, and actually, if you didn't know, you might mistake it for a lemon cake. Despite this, the texture was good, but really, it had no flavour at all. I felt short-changed, because I certainly couldn't find any evidence of any marmalade anywhere near it unless they forgot to put it in!
As with so many shop-bought cakes, it has that slightly chemical aftertaste which I find unpleasant. It's the sort of taste you get from cakes with too much raising agent (usually baking powder) in them.
Overall, it was disappointing. There was no evidence or taste of marmalade, and given the size of the actual cake inside, not great value either - you'd be lucky to get six slices out of it. The annoying cardboard packaging which had to be dissected before you got to the cake itself was unnecessary.
As an aside, another reviewer mentioned that cake baking is no longer a cheap option because of the electricity. Whilst this might be the case, if you're baking cakes at home from scratch, then the cost of ingredients is significantly lower than the bought version (and much tastier). Any increase in electricity costs are surely outweighed by the reduction in the cost of materials?
Sponge cakes are usually something that we don't tend to buy as there are only two of us at home and we never manage to eat a whole cake before it goes stale or off. Whilst wandering around Morrison's the other day this "Yorkshire Tea Marmalade Cake" caught our eye and as it was half price at only 99p we decided to buy one in as it sounded unusual.
The packaging is certainly eye-catching being a foil wrapper coloured in gold's, browns and yellows, there is a very nice illustration of the awaiting cake with a pot of marmalade and the "Yorkshire Tea" name sits proudly in the middle of the wrapper. The marmalade cake we are told is "Made with butter and our own recipe" and the manufacturers are Taylors of Harrogate.
Opening the wrapper and removing the cake you notice that it is sat in a nicely decorated, brown raised tray and the cake itself has a lovely golden top which has large chunks of crystallised sugar imbedded into it. The cake itself measures 8 inches in length, 2 inches thick and 3.5 inches wide so you get plenty for your money.
Slicing into the cake you notice it has a firm consistency and the slices come away without leaving many crumbs, the golden topping reveals a cream coloured interior and you can see the small chunks of marmalade dotted around. There is a slight aroma to the cake which smells of orange but this is very feint and quite unnoticeable really.
It's when you taste the cake that the marmalade flavour comes through and this provides a slightly bitter contrast to the regular, sweet sponge. Together the flavours mix beautifully and makes for a tasty but not overly sweet treat. The sponge is quite dense rather than being fluffy so there are hardly any crumbs and you don't need to eat much to feel satisfied and full, served with a cup of tea or coffee this would make an ideal afternoon break when you just fancy putting your feet up for 5 minutes or so.
The nutritional information is quite tricky to work out if I'm being honest with the amounts listed per 100 grams. As the wrapper doesn't reveal how much the cake weighs (and I don't have any kitchen scales) I can't say if 100 grams of cake represents a decent slice or not. Anyway, 100 grams of cake will provide 374 calories, and 14.3 grams of fat which seems perfectly reasonable to me and probably about right for what it actually is.
The ingredients don't reveal anything untoward, so won't bother listing them all here as everything appears to be natural, the manufacturers themselves state on the pack that they "use the best quality ingredients" and that "you won't find any unnatural flavours of colours, in this cake, just lots of lovely things like butter, free-range eggs and three-fruit marmalade"
Overall I did enjoy this Marmalade Cake from Yorkshire Tea, it did have a 'home made' taste to it and was delicious, for the price I paid - 99p - I thought this was fabulous value for money and even at its regular price of £1.99 I would buy it again. My only slight negative point with it is that it does tend to dry out quite quickly, but then again don't all cakes? It is one to eat over a couple of days and ensuring that it is well wrapped up in-between servings so if that's not a good reason to *have* to eat cake then I don't know what is!
An excellent 4/5 dooyoo star rating for me, not a perfect score because after all, no packaged cake tastes as nice as proper homemade ones but great nonetheless. Marmalade Cake from Yorkshire Tea can be found in the usual supermarkets on the cakes and biscuits aisle and does come recommended by me. Thanks for reading my review.
PRICE: £1.99 per family-sized cake from my local Sainsbury's
NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION (per 100g):
Wheat four, sugar, butter, free-range eggs, marmalade (made with sugar, orange, lemon & grapefruit), orange peel, lemon peel, tapioca starch, orange juice, glycerine, invert sugar syrup, glucose syrup, sodium bicarbonate, potassium sorbate, orange oil
Made in a bakery which uses nuts
Suitable for vegetarians
Being as I love cake and I love marmalade, it seems a perfectly idyllic situation for me to find the both of them together, in one item. I'm not the world's greatest at making my own cakes, which is partly due to laziness and partly due to lack of time, so I do tend to buy my cakes ready-made....with somewhat mixed fortunes.
As far as I'm aware, Yorkshire Tea Marmalade Cake (made by Taylors of Harrogate) has been around for some time, but it was only the other day I actually bought and tried one.
Taylors of Harrogate's Yorkshire Tea Marmalade Cake comes in a rather attractive foil wrapper which is sealed at both sides, and has an image of some cake, peeled & halved oranges and a jug of orange juice on the front, and on one side of the pack is Taylors' quality claim together with their contact details. The base of the pack repeats the quality claims, and shows nutritional information, ingredients, and has a cut-out Yorkshire Tea Token which can be collected, and this apparently (via the manufacturer's website) can be used with others to plant a tree in support of the Trees For Life Fund.
The wrapper is easy to open, and reveals the cake which rests inside a brown and gold coloured deep oblong paper tray - the tray is decorated with images of gold flowers.
The cake is risen in the middle, a nice golden yellowish orange colour, and measures about 7" x 4", being approximately 2" deep - the reason why I give the approximate measurements is so that anyone reading this who would like to know, is armed with the information before making a decision to buy.....some cakes which claim to be family-sized would hardly feed a fly! There are small nuggets of sugar decorating the surface and to me, the cake overall had a rather old-fashioned, almost home-baked appearance.
I removed the cake from the paper tray and transferred to a plate, cutting myself a slice in the process. The knife slid easily through the rather dense texture, and inside, the cake was a mid-yellowish colour with quite generous splodges of marmalade distributed evenly throughout.
On moving the slice of cake to my mouth, I could detect a pleasant, sweet, almost vanilla-like aroma, but I couldn't detect anything resembling a marmalade smell.
I took a small bite of the cake, and noticed that the texture was exactly as dense as it looked. On chewing, I found the taste to be very pleasant and somewhat buttery, but although the marmalade blobs tasted very nice, they didn't really to me seem to have a true marmalade flavour - to me it was more like apricot jam. I did love the sugar nuggets, and enjoyed crunching on them as they mixed in my mouth with the cake and the marmalade.
The outside of the cake was slightly harder than I like, but I found that the presence of the jam-like marmalade helped eradicate that to a satisfactory degree.
It didn't take me long to wolf down that first slice, and I immediately wanted another. I found that the flavour and appeal of the cake was growing on me as I continued to eat, I was enjoying it more and more, to the point where I had to use a lot of willpower, otherwise I'd have ate the whole cake at one sitting.
I was expecting this product to be a very plain - maybe even uninteresting sort of cake - which it is - but I was pleasantly surprised. I found the blend of cake, sugar nuggets and marmalade to be well balanced and delicious, and the overall effect wasn't too sweet for me, plus apart from the somewhat hard outer crust of the cake, the consistency was really good - solid yet soft, and substantial to the point where I felt as though I was eating something very satisfying.
There is no doubt that at some time in the future, I shall be buying Yorkshire Tea Marmalade Cake again, though I will have to use some self-control, as it is the type of cake which is dangerous for me to have around, in the sense that I want to eat the whole thing all at once. I shall have to reserve this cake for high days and holidays I think.
The only downside for me was the hardness of the outer crust (which makes it lose one star on the scoreboard), but that hasn't been such a problem that it put me off in anyway.
Of course the cake is very high in fat and calories, but then that's to be expected of this type of product. It is a little on the pricy side, but I personally feel it's worth it as there are no artificial colourings/flavourings present, and this is reflected in the taste.
I'd imagine a slice of this cake would go down very well with a cup of tea, but I can't extend my review outwards into that area, as I'm not a tea drinker.
Nice one Taylors, and I certainly shall buy this again at some point in the future; would be even nicer if the outside of the cake were a little softer.
Thanks for reading!
~~ May also be published on Ciao under my CelticSoulSister user name ~~
With the cost of running an electric oven running at about 3 units per hour this can be as much as 60p for many households, making a cake is no longer a cheap option unless you are batch baking for the freezer or filling your oven to capacity to cater for a large family.
In the last few years our family has dwindled in size to 3 at home and I have been experimenting with various shop bought cakes. Firstly I will put you in the picture about my living situation as I now refer to it as living in "The House of Trousers".
For any neighbours fans out there you will know what I mean but for those not familiar with the show I am now living with my husband and son after years of a girly filled household! They are actually delighted to eat my cakes and do so with gusto but they are healthier eaters than me and really it's my love of all things cakey which is fuelling this review! Cakes to me are like beacons. They flash on the shelves and attract me like magnets. However I am quite discerning and only buy them once if they are not to my home baked standard. When my daughters were at home I had more of an excuse to buy them, but with the boys, actually they prefer savoury things so I have had to own up and buy them for myself!
Yorkshire Tea Loaf attracted me as I have been interested in Yorkshire Tea for many years having been born just over the border in Lancashire. The company are a family business with the origins in the 1880s. It is one of the very few family tea merchants in the country. I actually like their tea because they make a special blend for hard water areas like we have in Essex, but it is a strong tea and often needs only a tiny second to brew unless you like it stewed.
They are also very keen on producing their goods ethically and they have donated over a million trees and a million pounds to Oxfam. Most recently they have been planting trees in India in one of the worlds most disaster prone areas in the river basins of the Ganges and the Brahmaputra rivers. This is something very dear to my heart and often now when I go shopping I am thinking about the companies I am buying from with regard to this issue. If they can provide evidence to me that they are actually helping to preserve the world in some way I feel much more positive about them- and if they make cakes so much the better!
Yorkshire Marmalade Cake is a loaf cake which you can find on the shelves usually near Mr Kipling and Mcvities cakes, and it is one of the beacons I told you about that usually flashes just when I get to the cake corner in the supermarket.
Having put on the kettle and found myself a lovely blue and white Cornish plate from the cupboard the fun begins. The shiny golden package tells me this is going to be tasty! The words Taylors of Harrogate and Yorkshire Tea are encased in the shape of a letter T and below them the words Marmalade Cake jump out at me with their saffron orange glow. Made with their own marmalade and with all natural ingredients it has no transfats.
On the side of the pack is a token which can either be put towards a tree to plant in the third world, or it can also be collected to redeem against a selection of gifts from their website.
So what is inside? The cake is a delicate shade of tangerine and a texture which is moist and slightly dense. It has flecks of peel in the loaf and it cuts easily into 6 good size portions.
Now to the flavour-does it remind you of an orange grove in Seville in January when the ripened fruit is harvested and the air is filled with the fresh scent of citrus? Well I have to disappoint you a little here, the flavour is more of marmalade and less of a rich conserve but I think the addition of an orange glace icing which you could easily make would enhance the taste experience. Try mixing icing sugar with orange or lemon juice until it reaches a spreading consistency and then ice the top and decorate with orange segments. It needs something like this to bring out the intense flavour of the orange which is not as strong as I would like it to be. As a slice of cake it does the job but I think it is probably best heated and served with vanilla custard as a pudding. Other ideas for the cake would be to use as a base for an orange trifle. Personally my favourite way to have it is to spread each slice with a good quality marmalade such as the one made by Whole Earth.
However you serve it it is good value. I paid £1.98 inTesco. It might not transport you to an orange grove in Seville if you have it plain, but with an icing, a decoration, or a Quantro- it just might.
I think Paddington bear would like it!